Fleetwood Town lost out in their Youth Alliance Cup clash against Accrington Stanley at Poolfoot Farm on Saturday afternoon.
Calvin Harper claimed a second-half brace to put the game beyond Fleetwood’s reach. The forward slotted both chances into the bottom corners of Fleetwood’s goal.
The first chance of the game fell to Fleetwood’s Dominic Richmond who connected very well with a left-footed shot from the edge of the box, but Accrington’s goalkeeper Oliver Riva was equal to the task.
Richmond was posing a real threat as he got in behind the Accrington defence and this time from the right-hand side of the box, his shot went just over.
Town will have surely thought they were going to be 1-0 down after an unfortunate ricochet left the ball directly in Leslie Adekoya’s path who had all the goal to aim at from less than six yards out but an outstanding save from Connor Eastham ensured the sides remained level.
Eastham was called upon once again, this time at his near post to deny Emerich Poilly as the Stanley midfielder shoved his way past several tackles before getting his shot off.
Town enjoyed a lengthy spell of possession inside the opposition half as they started to control the game, no real chances came from it though.
Adekoya would have been clear through on goal if not for Theo Butterworth who provided some excellent pressure on the striker and put him off balance before his weak attempt on goal.
Accrington thought they were two-up but their goal from a corner was ruled out for a foul on the goalkeeper.
Shortly afterwards, Stanley did double their lead, Harper slotting into the ball in the bottom right corner this time after an unfortunate mis-parry from Eastham.
Town struggled to get back into the game after going 2-0 down, they won multiple free-kicks around the edge of the opposition box but unfortunately couldn’t make the most of them.
Herman Daha came on with just over 15 minutes left and injected a spark into the game, looking to constantly get at his man and take him on.
Despite their best efforts, Fleetwood couldn’t turn the game around and both sides played out the remainder of the game to a 2-0 defeat.
Under-18s coach Simon Wiles said this after the game: “On a whole, I was pleased with the performance as I thought the lads competed really well. We worked a couple of half-chances through Under-16 Dom Richmond, which he was unfortunate with.
“The most important thing is that we made an impression on the game as we had such a young team out today as we have 12 of our scholars out with injuries at the minute so opportunities are there for our Under-15s and Under-16s to make the step up and compete against a tough team like Accrington.”
Town XI: Eastham (GK), Shuttleworth, Arthur, Hunter, Butterworth, Hand, Marsh, Devine, Richmond, Jones, Roberts (Daha 73’).
Unused Subs: Cragg (GK), Rowland, Eccles, Mundy.
Stanley XI: Riva (GK), O’Brien, Monk, Pickles, Newton, Poilly, Kardacz, Devonport, Trickett, Adekoya, Harper.
Unused Subs: Rogerson (GK), Hall, Fisher, Mulligan-Green, Young.